Turkey (country, not bird)
One of the best parts of planning a wedding is planning the honeymoon. It was also, for us, one of the hardest things to plan because how on earth are you supposed to pick where you want to go?!? Originally it was easy because we wanted to go on a safari in Tanzania, but, it turns out, safaris are incredibly expensive. So then we had to chose where we wanted to go, and, good grief, did the debates rage. We ultimately chose the Mediteranean coast of Turkey, from Antalya moving west, and it was a fantastic trip.It was not, however, without its slight hiccups. First, our bags got left in Amsterdam and, although we did get them back the day before we returned to the U.S., we had to buy new clothes and toiletries. We will never fly Sun Express ever again, and you shouldn’t either! Also, my Nikon broke 3 days into the trip. Luckily we picked up a fantastic point-and-click the morning we left DC, and it was actually really nice to not have to lug my huge camera around with me. And then there was the time that I had a panic attack because I was certain we were going to die because our car was going to plunge off a cliff into the sea.
We drove across the mountains west, and then followed the coast back to Antalya, stopping in a number of towns, cities, and ruins along the way. Here are some photos of some of the highlights of our trip, although it was really hard to chose. Our first overnight stop was a town called Dalyan, were we chartered a river boat to take us to a beach were loggerhead turtles breed, some ruins, and a thermal mud bath. Here’s the view from the front of the boat:
We also stayed at Butterfly Valley, which is basically a hippy commune that you can only get to by ferry. The beach was beautiful! Our favorite place, though, was Kabak, a very small town off the beaten path, and it will feature heavily in my next post about the food in Turkey. We stayed at the Shambala, which is a pension that was absolute heaven-on-earth, and we tried to figure out how we could stay there for the rest of our honeymoon. Then that conversation devolved into figuring out how we could stay at the Shambala for the rest of our lives. (I would help in the kitchen and Nate would be the cat-herder/pool boy.) Take another look at the picture at the top of this post and you’ll understand why we didn’t want to leave! This is the beach at Butterfly Valley:
We also visited the ruins of Teremessos, which were some of the most awesome ruins I’ve ever seen. Teremessos is perched up in the mountains, and it was never conquered because it was next to impossible to even drive to and they were (supposedly) war-loving people, which means that the ruins were in really good shape. We drove up the mountain, through (and past) the rain clouds, and then hiked to the ruin site. We were the only tourists there, and it was so much fun poking and climbing around the ruins. We stumbled upon the theater and it took our breath away:
The entire trip was a perfect combination of relaxing on the beach (which was great, but you know I’m not posting a photo of myself in a swimsuit on the internet…), ruin-trotting, exploring the country, and eating yummy food. If you want to know more about our itinerary or any other specifics, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Here I am having my Indiana Jones moment, although I’m unfortunately not wearing my hat: